The Kurdistan Regional Government’s Office of the Coordinator of International Recommendations issued a statement accusing NRT of inciting violence and sabotage after it reported protests in most areas of the region, calling on the Public Prosecutor to close it.
PM office accused the channel of inciting people not to apply the decisions of the Ministry of Interior in Kurdistan and breaking the quarantine in the region and questioning the declared numbers of people affected by the Corona epidemic, announcing its full support backingthe Ministry of culture’s notion to the prosecutorin the region to close the channel, which prompted to file a lawsuit against the satellitechannel, which will be brought before court next month.
“NRT has exploited freedoms in the region and incited violence,” the statement said.
The statement, which was received with awe by the Press Freedom Advocacy Association in Iraq, did not mention any of the severe attacks on journalists over the past week, and the cadres of (NRT) satellite channel who had the lion’s share of the aggressive attacks, many of whom were beaten, arrested and prevented, as well as the failure to urge the government to investigateinto the incidents that went unquestioned and escaped punishment of the perpetrators of violations and abuses against journalists and their institutions by the security forces.
The government statement also indirectly encourages security personnel to continue abuses against the press family.
The Press Freedom Advocacy Association in Iraq deplores all that is mentioned in the statement, which is a new setback in the area of freedom of expression, as well as a violation of the freedom of constitutionally guaranteed press work.
The association calls on the authorities in the Kurdistan region to reconsider their recent policy towards journalists and media organizations, and the need to take into account the treaties and conventions they have signed that have guaranteed freedom of expression, assembly and peaceful demonstration.
It also calls on the Federal Government to stand to its duties and protect the freedom of journalistic work in all regions of the country, and not to leave Kurdish journalists prisoners of the territory’s power actions outside all legal and constitutional contexts.